Oklahoma teachers continue their 110-mile march to Capitol

The teachers are still seeking a bigger raise for themselves — Cody, a single mother to a three-year-old, said she is in dire need of a bigger paycheck — but the focus now is on funding for their students.

“I keep telling everybody, if your teachers are willing to walk 110 miles for their students, what is the Oklahoma legislature willing to do for the students of Oklahoma?” Cody asked. “These people are giving up a week of their life.”


On third day of walkout, group of Oklahoma teachers embarks on 110-mile march to state Capitol

Many schools in Oklahoma this week have been closed as teachers have held walkouts. Some schools, including Tulsa public schools, remained closed on Thursday.

Oklahoma teachers continue their 110-mile march to Capitol
Oklahoma teachers continue their 110-mile march to Capitol

On Wednesday, Fallin called on teachers to return to their classrooms, a day after she angered many by arguing that teachers were out-of-bounds for continuing their walkout even after being granted a raise.

“Teachers want more, but it’s kind of like a teenage kid who wants a better car,” Fallin told CBS News.

The protests in Oklahoma were inspired by recent ones in West Virginia, another Republican state, where a nine-day strike led to a 5 percent raise for teachers.

Kentucky has also had teacher walkouts: On Monday, every public school in Kentucky closed when teachers gathered at the state Capitol to protest a pension overhaul bill that Republican lawmakers passed last week. About two dozen schools in two Kentucky counties were still closed Tuesday.

Meanwhile, in Arizona, where the average teacher pay is 43rd in the nation at about $47,000 a year, according to the National Education Association, educators are also mobilizing.

Last week, about 2,500 teachers rallied at the Arizona state Capitol demanding a 20 percent raise. On Wednesday, Arizona teachers, wearing red, held a “walk-in” where they held up protest signs and walked into their schools alongside those in the community who support their demands, reported NBC affiliate 12 News in Phoenix.

The Oklahoma teachers say they will continue their walkouts until legislators give them the increases they are seeking.

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